December 7, 2014

NYC #15 // Stretch out with UNDO

Yoga. It makes everyone a more loving, compassionate being on earth. After any session, I am always in Slow-Motion. I move, touch, eat, drink more mindfully. If you haven't read my small THANK YOU note to Yoga yet, here it is again:

Every single session is such a healing gift for my body and mind. I've learned how to combine breathing, physical exercise and meditation. This is real quality time. Always, always love yourself first before you go out and spread it. Also, you start recognizing how breathing is so important while doing yoga. You become more mindful and grateful for everyday little things. When you incorporate yoga and meditation in your hectic, crazy schedule, you will see small changes. Small changes with big impact. And the more I do it, the more I love life and feel happier, more grounded, more myself and confident. 

These pictures were taken at the Undo x WithoutWalls Yoga Event held for the launch of their 2nd Issue. After a small meditation intro session with Ben Turshen, Shae led us through a nice yoga flow. Thanks to UndoMagazine who made this happen!

December 2, 2014

NYC #14 // The Runner's High

 Rookie Run // Madison Square Park

Ever felt like being on a Running High?! 

These pictures were captured two weeks ago when I first signed myself up for the free Nike+ Runs.  

Sunday Morning: Rookie Run, a one miler to shake off some dust, get some basics and then build up your way to maybe-your fastest mile ever. This fun-run is for anyone who wants to start running - get back to it - or just any runner who needs a bit of change. It's great for taking friends, to introduce them to running and to move your body! The result of the Rookie Run? So, so much fun! We turned some non-joggers into run-lovers! Although it ended up being more than one mile, maybe two, my friends enjoyed it. For me, this was an easy one. I loved the sprinting part and was excited to start running again!

Tuesday Night: Home Run. Central Park. You can choose between 3, 5 and 7 miles. It's supposed to be your home run, so choose wisely. Nike Pacers will be there to help you with your paces and distances. Start slow, build up, go faster. Wow, that was a more challenging one for me because I wasn't used to the pace and the up and downs inside the park. The Pacer did a wonderful job by pushing us through, we motivated each other by brainstorming hashtags such as #makeitcount #noexcuses #nevernotrunning #sweatismagic Loved this group run!

  Home Run // Central Park

Thursday Night: Local Run. 4-5 miler through places and spaces you've never been. Explore the city with a local and learn something new about the New York City neighbourhoods! The Local is one of the best sessions: new seeings, good people and always a nice party afterwards. Although it was kind of raining and snowing that night, this was my best run so far, I kept a steady pace, breathing was excellent and hey, we made it through!

 Local Run // Roosevelt Island

Long Run // Uptown

Saturday Morning: Challenge yourself. Go further. Choose between 4, 8 and 12 miles. Wow, crazy huh? For everyone who is training for a race, the Long Run is good practice! This was by far the most challenging run for me. Why? I was running out of fuel, and I was damn! tired. The Pacer sticked to me, made me finish the whole thing although we stopped a few times to check breathing. She didn't give up on me and at the last metres, she kept yelling: Finish strong!!! The body was not used to it, still, I fell in love with every metre!

Sunday Morning: Another Rookie Run! Brought another friend. It was cold, but it was so much fun. We laughed lots! Connect with friends through movement and endorphins again. Motivate each other to come out and run in a group. These moments are priceless! 

As you can see, I was on a total running high and I didn't want to stop! You make new friends, get your butt moving, it's an appointment, so therefore #noexcuses!, and the feeling afterwards? Just A-M-A-ZING! Thanks to everyone, who make this running experience such an incredible one! Ever happen to be in New York? Go explore the running groups and never run by yourself again ;)

 Rookie Run // Nike Running Flatiron

November 25, 2014

NYC #13 // Happy Birthday ♥

Somewhere in Brooklyn.

Hello there! Yes, I am still alive and yes, I am still in New York. Many apologies for my lack of posts the last two weeks, but my private life had taken over me and my thoughts. Anyways, everything is good and yesterday was a special day for me! If you follow me on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter you might have noticed that it was my Birthday :) But writing this, I actually would like to say: Happy Bornday to everyone who made the past year such a special and incredible one full of life, love and joy! I am looking forward to another new year, a new and better me! May it be filled with more adventures, more mindfulness, more compassion and even more love ♥ 

Thank you to everyone who is reading this, thank you to everyone who believes in me and a huge thank you to my friends and family! And special thanks to the ones, who spent this bright day with me! :) Of course, this wasn't a usual birthday since I am far away from home, but I started the day easy, enjoyed lots of reading and met up with dear friends for some thrift shopping - because in NY you just have to do that! - then later that day, we went out for Vietnamese Dinner because I was craving vietnamese authentic Phở! 

 Bánh Cuốn
 (a nothern dish, rice batter filled with pork, 
mushrooms and shallots)
Sao Mai, East Village
203 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

Open everyday 11-22.30pm

We ended up at Sao Mai in the East Village and it was pretty decent. I would probably come back here again. The appetizers were good, the Beef-Phở Broth reminded me of home and the overall atmosphere, waiters (southern-vietnamese) were nice, too! I wonder how their vegetarian Phở is because this was not so vegan... so an exception for me. This might be a good thing to find out: Vietnamese Vegan Dishes!

After this filling meal, my Japanese friend took me to Cha-An, a very hidden place close to St.Marks. It's on the second floor of the building and when you step into the café, you will enter a Japanese traditional teahouse filled with tea pots, bamboo leaves and little tables. First thought: This place is super cute and cozy! The desserts were really really delicious, I'm definitely coming back here! We had the Dora-Yaki Ice-Cream Sandwich and Yukimi Zenzai - mochi ice cream with red bean porridge and Genmaicha Green Tea. This place is highly recommended for all green tea lovers!

 230 East 9th Street, 2nd Floor
New York, 10003

Mon-Thu 2-11pm
Fri-Sat 12-12am
Sun 12-10pm 

Therefore, I had a beautiful day in the city. The sun was shining bright, it was pretty warm and I had good food and good company! This week will be pretty food-heavy since Thanksgiving is coming up, so stay tuned for more foody-posts the next days, stay curious and have a Happy New Week guys ♥ 

November 10, 2014

Mindful Monday // Find your own Rhythm

The Writing by Tania Debono

Last night I had a nice little chat at the laundry shop. She was on her phone, I was with my magazine. It was one of those moments where one would think: hm, should I talk to her or shouldn't I? It may sound creepy talking to strangers, but for those of you who don't do that at all, some of those strangers can actually turn to your dearest friends, even if they happen to be on another continent. Or they could even change your life, but that's another story. Just be open to small everyday encounters. Anyways, I started talking to her and it turned out to be a wonderful conversation about living in New York day to day.

We drew a nice comparison: this college girl, who is experiencing a student exchange semester in this great city, finding everything crazy amazing, inspired by any-and everything, sucking it all in, was sitting next to a nature-lover, world-traveler, an adventurous, but also calm person who thinks that the city is draining her energy. Couldn't you agree with both of them? Some New Yorkers told me that they have a love-and-hate relationship with this city. On the one hand, it's super multicultural, very diverse and dense, many creatives and artists in one big apple. On the other hand, it's super busy, crowded, very very fast paced and everyone is hustlin', working several jobs to make ends meet. Crazy, huh? Honestly, it does drain your energy, you are seeking for fresh air, more sleep and less people. And although I have a bug in my ear who keeps telling me that I have to do MORE, sleep LESS, socialize and go to every single event that is happening here, I don't. 

It's okay to miss events, to say NO to others, and YES to yourself. It's okay to sleep in, it's okay to take your time to rest, relax and recharge. It's okay to find your own rhythm. When you're new to a city or new to an environment, you don't have to pack your 24hours full with stuff. Allow yourself sometimes to go day by day, live in the present moment and maybe.. not plan everything out. Even if you only have 7 weeks left. Some things I do to keep me present and find my own rhythm: 

1. Don't overstructure your day,
but some routines will help you when you feel lost.
Work/school schedules will do that for you.

2. Try Yoga or Meditation.
After every morning of yoga,
I feel so blessed, so grounded, so grateful 
and am happy to start the day with a smile.

4. Do some reading. 
This helps me to focus on only one action,
subway commutes are best for this.

5. Enjoy some tea.
I love the mornings when I just sit there
and enjoy the herbs, the flavor of my tea.

6. Most importantly,
do more of what you love.

It's about finding a balance between work and rest. Sometimes, it can be essential to just sit back and see the bigger picture, think about what's really important to you and how you can change your actions towards a better lifestyle.

In one of my communications readings I came across this: 

Creativity has paradoxical qualities:
passion & objectivity
tradition & rebelliousness
play & serious work

Give yourself some time to breathe because a relaxed mind is a creative mind.

November 4, 2014

NYC #12 // TCS Marathon // Running Towards Greatness

Wow!!! Congratulations to all 50,000 runners, 10,000 volunteers and the millions who cheered and watched them run this town! This was my first time being at a marathon and watching this happening. I had no expectations. That day, it was freezing cold, there was a harsh wind, but the music, the sun, the people and all the runners warmed us up when we cheered for the founders of Undo Magazine Robin and Vasha, but also for their friends from Black Roses NYC and the Bridgerunners.

It was really exciting to spread out positive vibes and love to everyone who passed by. They were so inspiring, encouraging and I was just like: Wow! These champions accomplished 26.2 miles (42,2km) on Nov, 2nd in the city of dreams. 

Have a look at the emotions yourself!

Robin Arzon

Nai Vasha

So many smiles, so much fun!
And we definitely need more women in sports, 
chasing their dreams and running towards greatness!